The inaugural Born Blak program held its first kick-off session for the ten First Nations content creators selected to take part in the program.
Led by Publicis Groupe (spearheaded by PR and influencer agency Herd MSL) and talent and influencer marketing agency Born Bred, the initiative aims to create opportunities for First Nations content creators who have historically been underrepresented in the Australian marketing and communications landscape.
The ten content creators were invited to Publicis Groupe’s Sydney office, where they engaged with leaders across the business and participated in a day of educational sessions run by the Born Blak advisory panel, Born Bred and Publicis Groupe agencies.
Sessions included technical upskilling, managing your mental health whilst navigating the online world and how to respond to a live creative brief. The group also heard from the advisory panel on their experience of becoming creators, giving insights into their growth journey, specific challenges they’ve faced, and how to be a representative voice within the industry and make an impact.
This year’s group of content creators were chosen by the Born Blak Advisory Panel and include Uncle Mot, Cerulean, Kyde Stubbs, Jay Rose Van Nus, Fiona Martich, Gabrielle Lanita, Amanda Morgan, Brandi Salmon, Gillya Ambrum and Josh Deane, who will all be paired with dedicated mentors to offer professional skills training.
Ash Jackson, Proud Wuthathi woman and Head of First Nations Creator Development at Born Bred, said: “We’re so proud of the ten creators who were selected to participate in this program. Bringing everyone together in Sydney for the kick-off session last week was such a highlight for everyone involved. For First Nations peoples in particular, gathering with community is a vital source of our resilience, so we’re grateful we could come together and share our lived experiences as a collective. Over the next few months of the program, we look forward to building our community and sharing knowledge with one another. Now more than ever, it is important that we push for increased representation of First Nations voices within the media.”
Skye Lambley, CEO of Herd MSL, added: “We are excited to have officially started the first year of Born Blak. As the industry evolves and brands are increasingly working with influencers and content creators, it’s important to create space for emerging talent from all backgrounds. All ten content creators who are taking part in our inaugural program are immensely talented, with specialties across cooking, language, fashion and sports. The program will run for the next six months and we’re looking forward to getting to know each creator on a personal level so that we can continue to tailor the program to meet their needs.”
Following the kick-off day, the group will continue to be mentored and supported, with two monthly sessions focused on technical skills (facilitated by Publicis and Born Bred) and community (through group sessions with First Nations mentors). There will also be a focus on networking with brands and organisations to help unlock opportunities for the creators.
The initiative was announced by Publicis Groupe and talent and influencer marketing agency Born Bred in June this year and is powered by a collective of Australian Groupe agencies, including Herd MSL, Leo Burnett, Saatchi & Saatchi, Publicis Worldwide, Spark Foundry, Zenith, Starcom, Razorfish and Publicis Sapient.
Born Blak has and will continue to be guided by the Born Blak Advisory Panel, made up of several influential First Nations individuals, including:
Matty Mills, proud Gamilaraay/Kamilaroi man – TV presenter, actor, podcaster, and entertainment reporter for NiTV
Yvonne Weldon, proud Wiradijuri woman – Australian local government politician, Deputy Chairwoman of the Metropolitan Local Aboriginal Land Council
Cody Schaeffer OAM, proud Quandamooka man – Australia’s youngest OAM recipient for 2023, Founder and Director of Borderline Australia, QLD nominee for Young Australian of the Year 2022, Brisbane's 2020 Young Citizen of the Year, ex-radio presenter and mental health advocate
Tom Forrest, proud Yorta Yorta man – ABC Kimberley Indigenous Trainee Features Reporter, filmmaker, content creator @outbacktom
Tilly Langford, proud Gumbaynggirr woman – Student Ambassador & Gadigal Centre Assistant at The University of Sydney. ACTU TikTok Creator @YoungWorkers. Content Creator & Blak Activist
Samuel Stubbs, proud Wangkatha man – WAFL player, Aboriginal Engagement Officer at Perth Football Club, TikTok content creator @s.stubbs23
To find out more, visit bornblak.com.au.